HHS provides US$19.2M to train primary care, dental residents in community-based programs to provide care in underserved, rural areas; funding from American Rescue Plan supports training for about 120 full-time resident positions

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February 8, 2022 (press release) –

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), is announcing the availability of $19.2 million in American Rescue Plan funding to support and expand community-based primary care residency programs. Awardees will use this funding to train residents to provide quality care to diverse populations and communities, particularly in underserved and rural areas. 

“The Biden-Harris Administration is committed to expanding the pipeline of health care providers in areas that have been hit hard by the pandemic and are experiencing physician shortages,” said HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra. “This funding provides our primary care workforce with opportunities to train in areas where they can make a profound impact, and is one of the many steps we’re taking to address long-standing health disparities.”

The Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education (THCGME) program supports training in community-based care settings. These training sites offer primary care and dental residents experience working with diverse, high-need patient communities in areas that often lack sufficient primary care physicians and dentists. After completing residencies, the majority of THCGME program graduates continue to practice in underserved or rural settings and two-thirds continue to practice primary care – nearly double the average of all medical and dental graduates.

“Training physician and dental residents in community settings is helping us to build a stronger primary care workforce that better supports the communities served,” said HRSA Administrator Carole Johnson. “The American Rescue Plan funding announced today will help us to grow the number of primary care residents training and practicing in underserved communities, a critical step toward expanding access to high-quality health care and advancing health equity.”

This THCGME funding opportunity will increase the program’s reach and support the equivalent of approximately 120 full-time resident positions. This funding opportunity supports greater expansion by allowing more applicants to apply that have recently been accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education exit disclaimer icon and the Commission on Dental Accreditation exit disclaimer icon. Existing HRSA THCGME residency program recipients may also apply to increase the number of resident full-time equivalents they support.

Teaching Health Center primary care residency programs offer training in skills needed to care for populations such as members of tribal communities, residents of rural areas, and people who are medically underserved.

To learn about eligibility and to apply for the THCGME program, visit grants.gov

Learn more about HRSA's funding opportunities.

Learn more about THCGME and its impact on the community.

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